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Japanese children on holidays in Belarus checked for internal radiation exposure

“The checking of documents of all the actors and all the audience is already the norm,”

Some perverse propaganda here.. no exact measurements given for the adults .. just “permissible limit“?

Japanese children on holidays in Belarus checked for internal radiation exposure

 

07.08.2013 17:19
Belarussian Telegraph Agencyhttp://news.belta.by/en/news/society?id=722877
MINSK, 7 August (BelTA) – Specialists from the mobile radiometric laboratory of the Pinsk border detachment have carried out an examination of 35 school children and seven grown-ups from the Japanese prefectures affected by the Fukushima disaster, BelTA learnt from the Belarusian State Border Committee.According to bilateral agreements between Belarus and Japan, the Japanese kids are currently on recuperative holidays at the Belarusian recreation and training center Zubrenok in Belarus.

The examination showed that the internal radiation exposure….

“did not exceed”

….permissible limit.

“Probably this can be attributed to the fact that the necessary civil protection measures were timely taken after the disaster in Japan. The recuperation in Zubrenok has done them good too,” the State Border Committee noted.

The Japanese delegation praised the work of the mobile radiometric laboratory and thanked the Belarusian side for the rehabilitation assistance provided to the prefectures after the disaster.

The State Border Committee enjoyed fruitful cooperation with the Japanese government while implementing the project for modernizing the Belarusian state border system to counteract illegal turnover of nuclear and radioactive materials (RADBEL). The project helped considerably improve radiation control at the border.

Similar humanitarian assistance was provided to Japan in 2012. Back then, at the invitation of the head of state, 10 teenagers from Fukushima Prefecture came to Belarus for a two-week recuperative vacation at Zubrenok.

Radical theater in Belarus performs under pressure

August 07. 2013 5:40AM
Associated Press

(AP) Two emotions course through spectators at the Belarus Free Theater excitement at watching avant-garde drama and fear that police will haul them away.

The theater, in a cramped and run-down house, is a rare crucible of dissent and experimentation in the country known as Europe’s last dictatorship, taking on topics such as political oppression and homosexuality.

Abroad, performing in such renowned settings as the Edinburgh Fringe festival in Scotland, the troupe has earned rave reviews and the support of theater luminaries such as Tom Stoppard, and the late Harold Pinter and Vaclav Havel. At home in the capital, Minsk, the theater suffers heavy fines and intimidating police visits, while its actors are blocked from work at the approved stages.

In the latest attempt to bully the 8-year-old company, a court recently fined the theater’s administrator for “improper use of the building.”

From the outside, the building appears barely usable for anything a shabby little one-story structure with a dented and corroded metal roof, set amid unkempt vegetation. Inside, there’s space for only a few dozen spectators on cramped benches or sitting on the floor. The actors are almost within arm’s reach.

It is underground theatre in the true sense of the word. Performances are advertised only by word of mouth. Its director and founders fled to London and communicate with the company in Minsk on Skype.

Police frequently raid the performances. Everyone found inside the theater is carted away in buses to police stations, where they are held for a few hours while their documents are checked. “The checking of documents of all the actors and all the audience is already the norm,” said Svetlana Sugako, the current administrator.

The theater now has a dozen productions in its repertoire. “Generation Jeans” is about the repression of young activists’ attempts at opposition. “Minsk 2011,” dealing with sexuality, won an Edinburgh Fringe prize “for innovation and outstanding new drama.”

Sometimes the police pressure is more than intimidation, as when the theater was showing the film “Europe’s Last Dictator,” about authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko. About 10 minutes into the showing, “riot police broke in and put us all up against the wall, hands behind our head,” said actor Kirill Konstantinov. “Without explanation, they took us to the police station, put handcuffs on us.”

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August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

INTERVIEW: Former member of ‘nuclear village’ calls for local initiative to rebuild Fukushima

August 08, 2013

By TAKAFUMI YOSHIDA/ Staff Writer

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/opinion/AJ201308080008

In his 40 years of involvement at nuclear plants in Fukushima Prefecture, Yukiteru Naka witnessed the safety myth surrounding nuclear energy grow to levels that left him sleepless on occasion.Yukiteru Naka in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture (Motooki Hayasaka)

Everything changed after the March 2011 accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

Naka, a former General Electric Co. engineer, is now promoting measures to reconstruct areas hardest hit by the nuclear disaster, including some radical ideas. But he says it is up to the affected communities to raise their voices and spark debate on how to rebuild.

A native of Okinawa Prefecture, Naka says he does not want Fukushima residents to feel abandoned by fellow Japanese—much as Okinawans felt.

“That is the last hope of an engineer who has lived with nuclear plants in Fukushima,” says Naka, chairman of Tohoku Enterprise Co., which provides services for Tokyo Electric Power Co., operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 plant.

Excerpts from his interview follow:

* * *

Q: You can hear children playing at a park through the window of your office in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture.

A: (Children can play outside) because radiation levels are relatively low here. We have to let them grow up in a safe environment. My heart aches when I think about children still evacuating from home to escape radiation.

Q: Some residents have returned to municipalities in Futaba county just around the Fukushima No. 1 plant. What is their situation?

A: Only elderly people have returned. Some say they will not be able to live meaningfully if their children or grandchildren cannot visit them.

It will take a long time to decommission reactors (at the Fukushima No. 1 plant). The slow pace of government response has been unbelievable.

The former “nuclear village” may have been disbanded, but I wonder if a new nuclear village has been born.

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August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fukushima: Pacific Ocean poisoned, millions at risk? – Pravda

It gets worse. There is a developing emergency situation at one of the reactors and it is spinning out of TEPCO’s control: Japan’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority has confirmed that radioactive material has breached a security barrier. In other words, TEPCO has lost control of the situation.

 

08.08.2013

http://english.pravda.ru/science/earth/08-08-2013/125328-pacific_poisoned-0/

ad news from Fukushima. Over two years since the nuclear explosion which wrecked the facility after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the Pacific Ocean is being poisoned daily with lethal doses of highly toxic substances. This has been going on for over two years and according to some analysts, millions of people are at risk. Including in the USA.

Michael Snyder is among many researchers investigating the tonnes of toxic waste pouring every single day from Fukushima for some 750 days, and it continues, every single second of every minute of every day, week and month. In his article “Radioactive Water From Fukushima Is Systematically Poisoning The Entire Pacific Ocean” published originally in the website The Truth on August 6, 2013, he claims that “a massive amount of highly radioactive water is escaping into the Pacific Ocean from the ruins of the destroyed Fukushima nuclear facility in Japan.”

The article identifies tritium, cesium and strontium as the toxic substances pouring into the Pacific Ocean and being spread far and wide by ocean currents, rain and wind. Due to the fact that these substances are toxic and are almost certainly in the food chain, then people consuming contaminated Pacific seafood are probably already contaminated and possibly have rising levels of toxicity building up inside them.

Let us see what the operator of the plant, TEPCO, or   Tokyo Electric Power Company,  has to say. On Monday the operator admitted that since May 2011, between twenty and forty trillion becquerels of radioactive material have poured into the Pacific Ocean. So much for the official line that the contaminated water was contained in the holding tanks under the plant.

It gets worse. There is a developing emergency situation at one of the reactors and it is spinning out of TEPCO’s control: Japan’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority has confirmed that radioactive material has breached a security barrier. In other words, TEPCO has lost control of the situation.

400 metric tonnes, every day, is being pumped into the reactor, radioactive water is getting into the sea, cancer-causing elements are leaking into the Pacific Ocean. But it gets worse still – the levels of radioactive materials is rising: levels of Caesium-134 rose by 90 times over the weekend and Caesium-137 rose by 86 times between Friday and Monday, according to TEPCO.

Quite how polluted the Pacific Ocean is and how far the contamination has spread is still a mystery. When people start dropping dead in California and Australia, we may find out.

Timofei Belov

Pravda.Ru

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fukushima: TEPCO’s Ad-Hoc Underground Wall Made It Worse

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

#Fukushima I Nuke Plant Groundwater Contamination: TEPCO’s Ad-Hoc Underground Impermeable Wall in Embankment Made It Worse

EXSKF

http://ex-skf.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/fukushima-i-nuke-plant-groundwater_6.html
This is just too … (I can’t even come up with the right word to describe).

Amateurish, maybe. Pathetic, maybe. And sad.

Because radioactive materials started to get detected in June this year in observation holes along the embankment in orders they didn’t expect, TEPCO hastily decided in early July to inject waterglass in the soil of the embankment to create an impermeable wall in the ground. Since it is hot during the day at the plant, they made the workers work at night in full protection gear, from 7PM to 7AM, in the area with high radiation.

According to the articles below, we now know what many of us may have been suspecting all along. The idiom “Haste makes waste” exists for TEPCO.

It turned out that injection of chemicals to create the impermeable wall was too successful. It not only stopped the flow of groundwater, but raised the groundwater level significantly. So now, the groundwater is probably going up and over the hastily built underground impermeable wall, and through the porous, top part of the embankment into the open culvert.

The embankment is artificial, built on top of a natural sandy beach which had existed before the plant was built. There is no way to inject chemicals to solidify the top 1.8 meters. Even if it is possible, the water will simply go around the sides.

(The opening sentence of Nikkei’s article below is wrong, though. There is no highly contaminated water leaking from the plant, yet. The highly contaminated water is mostly in the underground trenches, where it has been since 2011. Some may be leaking into the groundwater flowing from the west and that groundwater may be leaking into the open culvert.)

From Nikkei Shinbun (8/3/2013):

福島第1の汚染水、地下の遮水壁越え海に流出か

Contaminated water from Fukushima I Nuke Plant may be leaking into the ocean over the underground impermeable wall

東京電力福島第1原子力発電所から高濃度に汚染された水が流出している問題で、地下の「遮水壁」を乗り越えて海に漏れ出ている可能性が高いことが2日、明 らかになった。原子力規制委員会の作業部会で、更田豊志委員らが指摘し、東電も認めた。魚など海洋生物などへの影響が懸念されるため、規制委は東電に緊急 対策を指示した。

Regarding the problem of highly contaminated water leaking from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, it was revealed on August 2 that it was highly likely that the contaminated water is going over the underground “impermeable wall” and leaking into the ocean. Nuclear Regulatory Authority’s working group met on August 2, and commissioners including Toyoshi Fuketa pointed out the possibility and TEPCO admitted to the possibility. As there are worries over the effect on marine creatures including fish, Nuclear Regulatory Authority ordered TEPCO to come up with emergency countermeasures.

東電は地下の汚染水が海に流出するのを防ぐため、7月上旬から護岸沿いに水ガラスと呼ぶ特殊な薬液を注入して土を固め、遮水壁をつくる工事を進めていた。遮水壁は地下1.8メートルよりも深い部分に設置されている。

In order to prevent the underground contaminated water from leaking into the ocean, TEPCO has been injecting special liquid called waterglass [sodium silicate solution] along the embankment to solidify the soil and build an impermeable wall since early July. The wall is set deeper than 1.8 meters from the surface.

作業部会は地下水の水位が最近になって上昇し、遮水壁の上端部を越えた可能性が高いとの結論に達した。壁で地下水をせき止めたのが原因とみられる。地下水は壁を乗り越えるほか、横からも漏れる恐れがある。

The working group came to the conclusion that because the underground impermeable wall stopped the flow of groundwater, the level of groundwater rose recently, and went over the top of the wall. Not only the groundwater could go over the impermeable wall but go around the wall and leak from the sides of the wall.

東電は遮水壁の近くに井戸を掘り、地下水をくみ上げて水位を下げる工事に着手。今月末までの完成を目指す。地下水は山側から1日に100トンほど流れ込んでおり、これを超す量をくみ上げる必要がある。水の保管方法などは今後検討する。

TEPCO will start digging wells near the impermeable wall to draw groundwater and lower the water level. The company hopes to finish by the end of this month. Groundwater is flowing in from the mountain side (west) at the rate of 100 tonnes per day, and TEPCO needs to draw more than that amount. Storage of the water thus drawn will be discussed later.

(Diagram from Nikkei Shinbun, English labels are by me.)

Now, what is the point of drawing the contaminated groundwater along the embankment? In haste? Particularly when the levels of cesium, all-beta, and tritium in the open culvert have not risen in a significant manner? Do they even stop and think?

They have to somehow stop the groundwater upstream, before it reaches the space between the turbine buildings and the embankment and gets contaminated.

According to an article by Mainichi Shinbun that only appeared in Fukushima local edition (7/24/2013), the embankment was a landfill:

この一帯は原発建設時の1960年代に埋め立てられたもので、東電は「なぎさに泥岩、砂岩を積み上げてできた土地」と説明する。

This area was reclaimed in the 1960s when the plant was being constructed. TEPCO explains that the land was made by piling up mudstones and sandstones on the beach.

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August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Japan’s nuclear reactors predicted to restart by July 2014

Japan’s nuclear reactors predicted to restart by July 2014

The Institute of Energy Economics Japan says that their forecast is that the first nuclear reactor to restart will be by July 2014. This is also in line with what Nuclear Regulation Authority commissioner Kenzo Oshima said last month, in that they are projecting that some of the units may restart a year from now, but as of now they do not know how many that will be.

 

Out of Japan’s 50 reactors, only two have been online since they were forcibly shut down in 2011, following the nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi plant. With the rising costs of fossil fuel imports and the country’s strong reliance on nuclear power for its electricity supply, there is an enormous pressure to bring the reactors back online. This is in spite of the growing public disapproval of nuclear power.

 

The NRA has already begun accepting applications from utility operators that can comply with the new safety requirements issued. But the regulator has said it will take at least a year for them to finish all the necessary checks and evaluations needed to ensure that bringing them back online would not endanger anyone, particularly the residents who live near the plants, which is one of the painful lessons learned from the Fukushima disaster. “It is hard to imagine that all the applications would be rejected, though we don’t know what the outcome will be at the moment,” Oshima said earlier this month.

 

With that forecast, if Japan restarts 16 reactors by March 2015, annual fossil fuel imports would have increased by 7 trillion yen by that period, as compared to March 2011. They are also predicting that Japan will reach record highs in importing liquefied natural gas (LNG), with an increase of 1.7 percent to 88.3 million tons from March 2012 to March 2014, and another 1.5 percent to 89.7 million tons from March 2014 to March 2015. At present, Japan is already the third largest importer of LNG globally.

http://japandailypress.com/japans-nuclear-reactors-predicted-to-restart-by-july-2014-0633444/

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Painter with bag of rags destroys US submarine?

COST OF BAG OF RAGS £11.20 OR ABOUT $20 DOLLARS

Vacuum Packed Rags 10kg

Image source ; http://www.carchem.co.uk/vacuum-packed-rags-10kg-p-176.html?zenid=92bh7i14jr65ivjlo63h9t64b2

…..”I want to emphasize just the colossal nature of the repair required to restore Miami to service,” he told reporters in a conference call, noting the job was four times the amount of any previous repair job. “We’re talking about the whole forward front end of the ship gutted.”….

….The Miami was ravaged while undergoing repairs at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine, in May 2012 when a civilian painter used a bag of rags to ignite a fire because he wanted to leave work….

Citing tight budgets, U.S. Navy decides to scrap fire-damaged sub

Wed Aug 7, 2013 3:14pm EDT

* USS Miami burned in blaze set by shipyard painter

* Estimated cost of repairs had risen to $700 million

* Move will free funds for other delayed maintenance

By David Alexander

WASHINGTON, Aug 7 (Reuters) –

The U.S. Navy said on Wednesday it will scrap a nuclear-powered submarine damaged by an arsonist last year rather than repair it, saying the $700 million repair cost could not be justified in a time of tight budgets.

The decision to deactivate the USS Miami nuclear attack submarine, which had been scheduled for another decade of service, was the second example in as many days of the balancing act facing the Pentagon as it attempts to deal with effects of huge across-the-board budget cuts.

The department announced on Tuesday that it had found ways to trim $1 billion in planned spending, enabling it to reduce the unpaid leave it is forcing on some 650,000 civilian employees this fiscal year to six days from 11.

Rear Admiral Rick Breckenridge said the decision to deactivate the USS Miami, which involves removing the nuclear fuel and preparing the vessel to be taken apart, followed a reassessment that projected a jump in likely repair costs to about $700 million from the initial $500 million.

“I want to emphasize just the colossal nature of the repair required to restore Miami to service,” he told reporters in a conference call, noting the job was four times the amount of any previous repair job. “We’re talking about the whole forward front end of the ship gutted.”

The $37 billion across-the-board budget cut imposed on the Pentagon in March kept the Navy from accomplishing as much work on the Miami this year as it expected, he said, and it would have taken $390 million in the next fiscal year starting on Oct. 1 to repair the vessel.

“Miami casts a fairly large shadow over an already pressurized maintenance and repair effort,” Breckenridge said. “We just don’t have that money within the Navy without substantially affecting critical maintenance on other warships and submarines.”

The Miami was ravaged while undergoing repairs at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine, in May 2012 when a civilian painter used a bag of rags to ignite a fire because he wanted to leave work.

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August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Nuclear Insurance Corporations still scamming the Tax Payer? RIMS pleads for mercy!!

The report, written by three members of RIMS’ external affairs committee, concludes that an extension to TRIA should require the inclusion of coverage of acts of terrorism involving the use of nuclear, biological, chemical or radiological devices.

“TRIA, as currently constructed, neither includes nor excludes NBCR events,” RIMS noted, adding carriers;

“have largely relied on long-standing standard exclusions for nuclear and pollution risks to include exclusions for NBCR events in terrorism policies.”

But without such coverage, RIMS argues, policyholders suffering catastrophic losses due to an NBCR attack

“are at risk of going under”

Screenshot from 2013-08-07 21:59:13


DAILY NEWS Aug 7, 2013 3:20 PM

http://www.canadianunderwriter.ca/news/rims-calls-for-tria-extension-with-coverage-for-terrorism-from-chemical-nuclear-weapons/1002519195/

Risk and Insurance Management Society Inc. (RIMS) is calling on the U.S. government to extend its Terrorism Risk and Insurance Act, in some form, beyond 2014.

TRIA was first passed into law in 2002 and, in essence, requires insurers to offer terrorism coverage to commercial clients. One of its aims is to ensure the “widespread availability and affordability of property and casualty coverage” for terrorism risk, with the U.S. government acting as a backstop under certain circumstances, according to a report released Tuesday by RIMS.

TRIA has been extended several times and currently has an expiry date of Dec. 31, 2014, though Congress is considering proposals to extend it.

“RIMS affirms its view that for the protection of insurance policyholders and the stability of the country’s economy, TRIA should be continued in some form,” RIMS wrote in the report, titled Terrorism Risk Insurance Act: The Commercial Consumer’s Perspective.

RIMS stated most companies “cannot afford to absorb the costs of terrorism related losses without the benefit of an insurance backstop.”

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August 7, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tepco General Manager – “this radioactive discharge is beyond our control”

Tepco Press Conference: The situation at Fukushima is bleak — “This discharge is beyond our control” (VIDEO) http://enenews.com/tepco-situation-fukushima-bleak-discharge-beyond-control-video

Title: Japan’s nuclear body says radioactive groundwater at Fukushima an ‘emergency’
Source: Arirang News
Date: Aug. 6, 2013
Transcript Excerpts
Two and a half years may have passed since the Fukushima nuclear disaster, but problems there are as serious now as they’ve ever been […]


The head of the country’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority task force Shinji Kinjo told Reuters on Monday that the leak was an emergency, but he was worried the plant’s operator, TEPCO, had no sense of how to deal with it. […]

In a recent news conference, TEPCO General manager Masayuki Ono said the situation was bleak.

“We understand that this discharge is beyond our control and we do not think the current situation is good.” […]

Watch the broadcast here

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Resources -audiovicual | Leave a comment

Japan’s desperate battle to contain Fukushima’s radioactive water

Japan Nuclear Plant’s Battle to Contain Radioactive Water Tepco Builds Sunken Barrier to Ring-Fence Site, but Water May Have Already Overtopped Wall  WSJ, 6 Aug 13, by  MARI IWATA  and  PHRED DVORAK
To stem the advance of radioactive water to the sea, the operator of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has tried plugs, walls, pumps and chemicals that harden the ground into a solid barrier.

But as Tokyo Electric Power Co. 9501.TO +3.26% prepares this week to start work on a new set of measures that would ring off and cap the area where the most highly contaminated water has been found, some experts and regulators are saying that the battle to completely contain radioactivity to the site of one of the world’s worst nuclear accidents may be a losing one.

In the most recent example of Tepco’s Sisyphean struggle, the company said late last week that rising levels of contaminated groundwater may have already overtopped a sunken barrier that the utility started only a month ago, and wasn’t even expecting to complete until late this week. Tepco’s water-control measures, such as pumping out contaminated water and putting it in storage, are “merely a temporary solution,” said Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority, at a news conference last week. Eventually, “it will be necessary to discharge water” that’s still contaminated into the sea, he said…..

Controlling contaminated water has been a struggle at Fukushima Daiichi ever since the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami knocked out the power at the plant and sent its three active reactors spiraling out of control. Some 400 metric tons of water a day is still being used to cool the melted fuel cores—though much of that water is now recycled. More troubling is another 400 tons a day of groundwater that flows down from hills and mountains into the compound, and toward the sea.

For the past two years, Tepco has been trying to keep the contamination contained by pumping accumulated water out of the highly radioactive reactor buildings, and storing it in tanks on the plant grounds. But the company’s efforts went into overdrive a few months ago, when it found that groundwater sampled near the crippled reactors was showing spiking levels of radioactive elements. It was unclear why. What’s more, Tepco said that the water was likely leaking into the sea.

The continuing problems at the reactor site, including the company’s lack of transparency over the radioactive leaks, have drawn criticism from Japanese regulators….http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323420604578651713545887032.html

 

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, water | 2 Comments

Hiroshima Day commemorated by International Red Cross

red-cross-and-red-crescentSwitzerland: Ceremony recalls dangers of nuclear weapons  http://www.icrc.org/eng/resources/documents/feature/2013/08-06-switzerland-japan-nuclear-bomb.htm 06-08-2013 

A descendant of a Gingko biloba tree that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945 was planted at a ceremony at the ICRC’s headquarters in Geneva today, standing as a reminder of the horrific consequences of nuclear weapons and as a sign of hope that they will one day be eliminated.

The Gingko biloba planted today is the first sapling of the 200-year-old Hiroshima survivor tree to be planted in Switzerland.

The ICRC and the city of Hiroshima have a unique bond. Dr Marcel Junod, then head of the ICRC’s delegation in Japan, was the first foreign doctor to enter the devastated city a little over a month after the bombing, bringing with him desperately needed medical supplies. Since then, the ICRC, and the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement more broadly, have regularly urged States to pursue the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons, drawing conviction from Junod’s shocking findings in Hiroshima.

ICRC delegate Fritz Bilfinger reached Hiroshima shortly after the bombing. He sent Dr Junod a shocked telegram describing the situation in the city.

Speaking at the event in Geneva today, ICRC vice-president Olivier Vodoz said: “Nuclear weapons are unique in their destructive power. The scale of the destruction, and the risk associated with exposure to ionizing radiation, make it nearly impossible to deliver adequate humanitarian assistance to victims in the aftermath of a nuclear blast.

Hiroshima-Never-Again

We firmly believe that States must ensure such weapons are never used again.”

Read why there’s no way to deliver assistance in the event of a nuclear explosion.

Junod came face-to-face with the grim reality of medical care in the bombed city. The explosion had killed or injured 90% of Hiroshima’s doctors. There was a desperate need for blood, but most potential donors were either dead or injured. Junod’s memoirs bear witness to the appalling conditions he encountered in Hiroshima.

Find out more about Marcel Junod’s life and work in photos.

The seeds and saplings of a 200-year-old tree that survived the explosion  have been nurtured and protected over the intervening decades and are now being planted worldwide. Today’s ceremony, organized in collaboration with Green Legacy Hiroshima and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), featured a reading from Dr Junod’s Hiroshima memoirs by Olivier Vodoz. Deputy permanent representative of Japan in Geneva Takashi Okada delivered words of support, and the mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki sent messages of appreciation. Isabel Rochat, councillor of state of the republic and canton of Geneva, also attended the event.

The atomic bomb struck Hiroshima at 8.15 a.m. on 6 August 1945. When Junod visited a month later, he found the city frozen in time. In his book Warrior without Weapons he writes:: “On what remained of the station facade the hands of the clock had been stopped by the fire at 8.15. It was perhaps the first time in the history of humanity that the birth of a new era was recorded on the face of a clock.”

Visit the section of our site on nuclear weapons.

August 7, 2013 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

How they began: the lies about Hiroshima atomic bombing

secret-agent-Smfrom its very first words, the official narrative was built on a lie, or at best a half-truth. Hiroshima did contain an important military base, used as a staging area for Southeast Asia, where perhaps 25,000 troops might be quartered. But the bomb had been aimed not at the “Army base” but at the very center of a city of 350,000, with the vast majority women and children and elderly males.

Hiroshima-motherIn fact, the two most important reasons Hiroshima had been chosen as our #1 target were: It had been relatively untouched by conventional bombs, meaning its large population was still in place and the bomb’s effects could be fully judged

 residential areas bore the brunt of the bomb, with less than 10 percent of the city’s manufacturing, transportation, and storage facilities damaged.

There was something else missing in the Truman announcement: Because the president in his statement failed to mention radiation effects, 

68 Years Ago: Truman Opened the Nuclear Era — With a Lie About Hiroshima Greg Mitchell, HUFFINGTON POST, : 08/06/2013 When the shocking news emerged that morning, exactly 68 years ago, it took the form of a routine press release, a little more than one thousand words long……The atmosphere was so casual, many reporters had difficulty grasping the announcement. ….

Truman’s four-page statement had been crafted with considerable care over many months, as my research at the Truman Library for two books on the subject made clear…..

Those who helped prepare the presidential statement — principally Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson — sensed that the stakes were high, for this marked the unveiling of both the atomic bomb and the official narrative of Hiroshima, which largely persists to this day. It was vital that this event be viewed as consistent with American decency and concern for human life. Continue reading

August 7, 2013 Posted by | history, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Growing worldwide anti nuclear movement

wave-opinionIs there a new anti-nuclear movement growing? RABBLE CA, BY  CELYN DUFAY  AUGUST 6, 2013 It has been 68 years since America’s nuclear attacks on Japan, and world leaders are still discussing nuclear arms reduction and disarmament to be achieved “someday.”

But unprepared to sit and wait while thousands of nuclear weapons remain on full alert, citizens are organizing on every continent to demand their governments establish a convention banning nuclear weapons.

Positive signs of the renewed interest in the reduction and elimination of nuclear weapons have been emerging in recent years: from Obama’s goal of achieving a nuclear weapons free world, and the negotiation of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty with Russia, to the recent support of 389 Members of the European Parliament for the Global Zero Action Plan, which calls for the phased and verified elimination of all nuclear weapons.

Importantly, we are also witnessing a rise in popular mobilization across the globe, by populations calling for the prohibition and elimination of all nuclear weapons around the world.

Throughout Nuclear Abolition Week 2013, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) had campaigners spread across 25 countries, on every continent, calling upon national governments to work together to ban and eliminate all nuclear weapons.

Through organized press conferences, exhibitions, round table discussions, meetings with government officials, and other activities, organizers brought this important topic to the political agenda. The popular response to these initiatives was tremendous: over 5000 people from 126 countries have now signed ICAN’s online petition calling for a negotiated nuclear weapons ban.

Here in Canada, Ceasefire.ca has been supporting ICAN with its “Louder Than the Bomb” campaign, by collecting signatures from citizens, coast to coast, to petition the Government of Canada to work with the international community to establish a nuclear weapons ban……

According to recent assessments, the overwhelming majority of the world’s population and national governments support a ban on nuclear weapons and efforts to achieve nuclear disarmament. An international poll conducted in 26 countries found that 78 percent of people support a treaty that would outlaw and eliminate nuclear weapons.

Similarly, 151 of 195 UN member nations have a stated policy supporting a ban on nuclear weapons. Only 22 nations in the world are opposed to a ban on nuclear weapons, nearly all of whom are members or allies of NATO or the EU…….

To advocate for the peaceful disarmament of nuclear weapons from inside NATO would strengthen international peace movements and restore Canada’s clout as an international leader in peace and prosperity.

Citizens of the world therefore, must mobilise in support of ICAN and other peace movements to encourage substantive action by their governments to ban nuclear weapons now.  http://rabble.ca/news/2013/08/there-new-anti-nuclear-movement-growing

August 7, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, opposition to nuclear | 1 Comment

Hiroshima remembers. Mayor rebukes Abe government

hiroshimaflag-japanHiroshima marks atom-bomb anniversary as Japan unveils warship (+video) Hiroshima marked the 68th anniversary Tuesday of the dropping of ‘Little Boy’ on the city. Sixty-eight years later, citizens of Hiroshima and the nation of Japan are considering revising its war-renouncing Constitution.  By , CSM, Correspondent / August 6, 2013 TOKYO

As 50,000 people marked the 68th  anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, the mayor of the city used his speech at the somber annual ceremony to criticize Tokyo‘s plans to both restart the country’s nuclear reactors and export the technology. A peace bell was struck at 8:15 a.m. on Tuesday, the moment the ‘Little Boy’ bomb was dropped on Hiroshima from a Boeing B-29 Superfortress on Aug. 6, 1945. ……

Hiroshima’s mayor is critical

In the traditional peace declaration speech delivered every year by the mayor of Hiroshima, however, Mayor Kazumi Matsui rebuked the Abe administration over its intention to sell Japanese nuclear power technology to India, one of four countries that have not signed the Treaty on the Non-Proliferationof Nuclear Weapons. Continue reading

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Japan, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Japan’s emergency experimental methods to stem flow of radioactive water

Jwater-radiationflag-japanapan Nuclear Plant’s Battle to Contain Radioactive Water Tepco Builds Sunken Barrier to Ring-Fence Site, but Water May Have Already Overtopped Wall  WSJ, 6 Aug 13, by  MARI IWATA  and  PHRED DVORAK   “…………As an emergency measure, Tepco last month started to inject the ground near the coast with chemicals that hardened it into an underground barrier. But since then, groundwater levels in the area have risen faster, as they hit the barrier. Recently, Tepco has found that the groundwater has risen to around a meter below the surface—already above the level of the underground barrier, which starts 1.8 meters down.Now, Tepco is planning to pump out some of the water that’s built up behind the barrier, and store it as well. It’s preparing to extend the underground hardened-earth barrier in a ring around the most heavily contaminated section of coastline, in hopes of heading groundwater off before it can flood in. Tepco is also proposing to cap that ringed section with gravel and asphalt, so nothing gets out. The operator is hoping to get an initial ring of hardened ground done by October.

The company has some other more experimental ideas on the table as well. One involves surrounding the contaminated reactor buildings with a shield of frozen soil.

But there’s a risk to changing the flow of groundwater in the ways that Tepco is considering, said Tatsuya Shinkawa, nuclear accident response director of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, at a news conference last month. The water could pool dangerously underground, softening the earth and potentially toppling the reactor buildings, he said. Tepco should also try things like using robots to fix cracks in the reactor buildings where the water is likely seeping through.

Freezing soil has its own problems, said Kunio Watanabe, a geology professor at Saitama University. The technology, which is used in civil engineering to dig tunnels, may be able to cut down the amount of groundwater entering the contaminated site, but it is expensive. “You’ll need hundreds of millions of yen to build a system,” Mr. Watanabe said. “You’ll also need a large amount of electricity to maintain the ice walls.”….. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323420604578651713545887032.html

August 7, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, Reference, water | Leave a comment

Secrets about injustice revealed by Manning and Snowden, not military secrets

text-Manning,-Bradleythe reason there will be more Mannings and Snowdens is that so many American secrets are not strict military secrets but scandalous public secrets pertaining to ways the US national security state behaves that are at odds with national or international law, or in conflict with fundamental national values. Whether one condones what Snowden did or not, it is clear that he was motivated by a deep sense of indignation that his government was doing something profoundly wrong. “If you want a secret respected,” said Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, one of the country’s greatest commentators on secrecy, “see that it’s respectable in the first place.”

Snowden,-EdwardNot all secrets are alike, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists,  Hugh Gusterson “……..The second kind of secret is what anthropologists call the “public secret.” These are denied yet known. Their ambiguous status as simultaneously public and secret torques them with psychological conflict. …….  Not infrequently, as Henrik Ibsen famously dramatized in his play An Enemy of the People, opprobrium attaches most harshly not to the transgressor, but to the person who tells the truth out loud…..

Often the state’s greatest rage is directed at those who reveal public secrets, not military secrets. Richard Nixon called Daniel Ellsberg “the most dangerous man in America” not because he shared military secrets with the Vietcong (he did not), but because in giving the Pentagon Papers to the New York Times (and thus the American people), he made it impossible to deny what many already suspected—that the US government had lied about the reasons for the Vietnam War and about progress in fighting it…….
US national security officials have likewise been enraged by Bradley Manning, the US Army soldier who gave WikiLeaks 250,000 diplomatic cables and 500,000 Army reports. Although the Obama administration claims that Manning and WikiLeaks gave away military secrets, for the most part they caused embarrassment by revealing public secrets.  Many Americans had long been sure that, military propaganda notwithstanding, some American troops in Iraq were prone to using violence indiscriminately, killing innocents, and enjoying the act of killing, but Manning’s release of the “collateral murder” video, shot from a US military helicopter, gave visceral and undeniable form to inchoate knowledge. …..

Even before he was found guilty, Manning has been punished harshly. The United Nations special rapporteur on torture complained that Manning—held for months in solitary confinement, often naked, and deprived of sleep—had been subjected to “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment in violation of Article 16 of the Convention Against Torture.”

Like Manning, Edward Snowden gave away a public secret, revealing that the National Security Agency does not just spy on foreigners, but in violation of the legal framework established after the Vietnam War, also harvests vast quantities of information on the communications of American citizens, including email messages, browsing histories, postal records, and telephone metadata. When public rather than military secrets are given away, the state always insists that military security has been damaged, so it should not surprise us that the Obama administration claims Snowden gave away military secrets that will help those bent on attacking the United States. ….. The US government has secretly created a massive apparatus of domestic surveillance on the edge of the law. Continue reading

August 7, 2013 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | 1 Comment